How to make the most out of financial translations?
Financial translations are one of the most challenging types of translation due to their high requirements: Complex content, Tight deadlines, High accuracy, and Specialized terminology. Producing a high-quality financial translation is not easy. It requires efforts from both translators and customers – i.e. your company.
In terms of translators, they should have long experience in translating financial documents as well as constantly learn and update new terminologies of the industry. When it comes to your company, you need to give clear objectives, instructions, etc. to translators to boost the translation process.
In today’s post, we will focus on tips that will help your company well prepare for a financial translation project.
Table of Contents
- 1. Set Clear Objectives and Instructions
- 2. Make the most of technology
- 3. Pay attention to confidentiality
- 4. Give translators enough time
- 5. Select translators with long experience and expertise
1. Set Clear Objectives and Instructions
With the high complexity of financial documents, an understanding and agreement on the target of a project must be achieved by both translators and your company before the project starts. Your company should inform the translators of your expected results: Who are the target audiences?, Which tone or writing styles should translators use? Which formats do you want? etc. You can reach this agreement by preparing clear and detailed instructions for your translators.
What should be included in financial instructions for translators?
- A brief of the target audience: You should give the translators a brief of your customer avatar – Who are they? Do they have expertise in the financial industry? Which tone of writing should be used? etc. All this information ensures the language used in the translations is not too overcomplicated or oversimplified for the target audience.
- A list of terminology: A list containing all terms or words you expect your translators to use throughout the translation process helps you achieve high consistency for your documents.
- Expected outcomes: Do you need ready-to-publish financial documents or just a summary to understand the general idea of a document? Let your translators know what you are expecting so they can meet your requirements easier.
- The expected layouts: You should also mention the types of files (.doc, .pdf, .xlx, etc.) and layouts you want so the translators will adjust their translations to fit the expected layouts.
- Other notes if needed.
Why is it important to have good financial instructions?
- Target the right person: Readers are likely to engage in documents that write in the tone and words suitable for their expertise and interest. A financial expert doesn’t want to read an oversimplified financial translated document. Likewise, a newbie in the industry doesn’t gain benefits from reading an overcomplicated financial report.
- Save a great deal of time: A foggy instruction or no instructions at all is likely to bring you an undesirable financial translation with mistakes that could have been avoided in the first place. Hours or days will be used on making feedback, correcting mistakes, and transferring the files between two sides. In contrast, a clear instruction can give you good-to-use documents with minor mistakes and less time is wasted on fixing errors.
- Minimize translation costs: Time is gold. Once you save time from the translating process, you can publish your documents sooner, making sure that your company is not missing out any opportunities.
2. Make the most of technology
The translation industry has long been mystified as a “human-only” industry while in fact, it’s assisted by many software and apps, especially the CAT Tools. With the help from Translation Memory (TM), CAT Tools allow you to cut down on costs as you don’t have to pay full price for words that have been translated before. By getting the most out of this technology, you’ll easily achieve both targets: best-in-class quality and minimized costs – or a cost-effective project. CAT Tools are even more useful for long-run financial translation projects. Because when the TM is getting bigger and greater after each project, the money you pay is lessened.
What’s more, CAT Tools provide you with a bilingual display. The left screen is the source text while the right screen shows the translation. Thus, this display helps translators check and compare the numbers on both sides to detect any possible errors.
3. Pay attention to confidentiality
Financial documents, ranging from company annual reports and tax reports to personal income statements are sensitive information that you don’t want to be published without your acknowledgement. Hence, you should ask the translators or translation agency about the procedures used to protect your documents’ confidentiality. Both sides should sign an NDA before working on the project. What’s more, using unencrypted email attachments or cloud-based CAT tools are two good options to protect your documents while sending back and forth to translators.
4. Give translators enough time
During the end of the tax year or annual report season, there is a significant rise in the demand for financial translations. As a result, financial translators work on a heavy workload and tight deadlines to meet the customers’ demands. To avoid pushing them too much and receive an unsatisfied outcome, your company should plan ahead and contact them a few days or weeks before the project starts. Heads-up gives them time to prepare and clear their calendar to focus your projects.
Besides, financial translations require translators to pay attention to details to avoid punctual mistakes, short and long scales misuse, and other common mistakes in financial translations. Therefore, you should give translators enough time to translate and double-check their outcomes to eliminate errors.
5. Select translators with long experience and expertise
In order to produce an excellent financial translation, a translator is not only a native linguist with a deep understanding of the target language but also a subject-matter expert in financial. To get the best results, you should choose and test the translators carefully. Below are some criteria you should take into consideration:
- Be a native speaker of the target language.
- At least 2 years of experience in the translation industry.
- Have a degree in financing and accounting.
- Having work experience in financial companies is a plus.
The recruiting process might be time-consuming and risky if you haven’t had experience in finding freelance translators. If that, consider working with a translation agency. With a network of hundreds of translators from all over the world, GTE Localize has years of experience working in the financial translation industry. We provide high-quality financial translations by native linguists with a background of financing and accounting. We are familiar with traps in translating financial documents and make sure your documents are in good hands of our linguists.